Panthers activate Christian McCaffrey, Sam Darnold cleared

Christian McCaffrey

CHARLOTTE — The Panthers added some pop to the backfield, a week after their best rushing game of the season.

The team activated running back Christian McCaffrey Saturday, meaning he will be eligible for Sunday's game against the Patriots.

The team is hopeful he'll be able to play, after he did some work in practice this week. He's been out since suffering a hamstring injury in Week 3 at Houston, but was designated to return from injured reserve earlier this week. Without him, they ran 47 times for 203 yards at Atlanta last week.

Also Saturday, quarterback Sam Darnold cleared the concussion protocol.

He was also on the injury report this week with a shoulder issue, and was listed as questionable on the injury report. It will be a game-time decision as to whether he'll start. If he doesn't, P.J. Walker would start against the Patriots.

The Panthers also added safety Myles Hartsfield to the active roster. He had been designated to return from IR, after a wrist injury in the opener. Hartsfield was their starting nickel in Week 1 against the Jets. That gets them back to 53 players on the active roster.

The Panthers also promoted a pair of practice squad players (standard elevation). Punter Lachlan Edwards and wide receiver Willie Snead were promoted, and are eligible to play Sunday.

Edwards punted last week as well.

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